New strain enters Nepal

New type of COVID confirmed in Far West, risk of transmission high

KAILALI: A new type of COVID infection has been confirmed in the far-western region. The new type has been confirmed in three men who came to Nepal from India a few days ago, according to the Ministry of Social Development.

This has been confirmed in a 22-year-old man from Kanchanpur, a 31-year-old man from Dadeldhura and a 30-year-old man from Doti, said Ministry Spokesperson Narendra Karki. All three are now in home isolation.

“It’s different than in the past,” he said, adding that “research is still being done to find out what it is.” He also said that this type of COVID spreads rapidly.

“Until a few days ago, there were thousands of COVID infections in India. Now the number has reached a hundred thousand,” he said, adding that “This type of COVID infection can be intensified in Nepal as well.” 

Despite the confirmation of a new type of infection in three persons passing through the Trinagar border point of Kailali, the negligence at the border point has not abated yet.

While the number of tests have not increased yet, those who have been confirmed to have COVID infections are also going straight home.

In the last few days, after the introduction of a new type of COVID, work is being done to keep the infected in isolation prepared by the Dhangadhi sub-metropolis.

“So far, we have kept about 70 people in isolation,” said Lal Bahadur Dhami, head of the District Health Office in Kailali. 

He said that in the first phase, the three infected people from India directly went home. “They are living in home isolation,” he says. “Now, we have made arrangements to keep them here.” 

In a month, about 10,000 Nepalis have entered from Kailali’s Gauriphanta checkpoint. Of these, only about 3,500 have been antigen tested. The risk of infection has increased as the scope of the test is reduced. 

The District Administration Office Kailali, claims that preparations are underway to prevent the spread of the new type of COVID. Information Officer Shivaraj Joshi said that the antigen testing of all those coming from India was being done after it was confirmed that a new type of COVID had been introduced. “We are preparing as fast as we can,” Joshi said. “Everyone is being tested now.”  

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